Grade: C - 14 and up
Author: Georgette Heyer
Proving the theory of the rich getting richer, Sir Waldo Hawkridge is left the rather run-down estate of a childless relative. This because he was the only relative 'who paid as little notice of me as I did of him'. This causes some discussion and upset among the other relatives. Why should Sir Waldo, who already has so much and certainly has no need of another estate, be the one to inherit? Of course, Sir Waldo has no desire of the crumbling estate in Yorkshire, and soon makes plans to turn it into an orphanage. He only hopes that once he has pored some of his own money into it, eventually it will be able to pay for itself.
Intending to set the estate in order, Sir Waldo journeys into the country with his young cousin, Lord Lindeth, and the two set the countryside into commotion. Sir Waldo's reputation is well known, and the young men of the area are thrilled to have 'the nonesuch' to entertain and socialize with. Though some serious accidents are barely avoided as they try to impress and emulate him. An equal amount of stir is roused among the young ladies, who are dazzled by Lord Lindeth's handsome manners and boyish good looks.
Two of the women involved in the story are the stunningly beautiful, impetuous and willful Tiffany Wield, and her well-bred intelligent governess/companion opposite, Ancilla Trent. Selfish disasters are averted left and right by Miss Trent, who knows how to handle her charge as no one else in her life is able. Soon Miss Trent finds an unlikely ally in her scheme to keep Tiffani from ruining her own or anybody elses' life, in the figure of the nonesuch, who ends up being surprisingly kind, level-headed, and down to earth.
This was an enjoyable and entertaining read. Much in the style of Jane Austen. Georgette Heyer's historical accuracy is superb, and her writing style very subtle. This book was full of witty humor, and slow and deliberate romance. Though the characters tend to seem a bit one sided, it left me with a satisfying and hopeful glow.